Pune: After the State government’s order banning use of public money for cultural programmes, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has decided to stop giving award money in cash. Now, only citations will be given to the winners. The civic body gives 17 different awards totalling around Rs 25 lakh every year.
Sunil Parkhi, Municipal Secretary, said, “The State government has instructed all civic bodies to avoid use of public money for cultural events and religious functions. The government’s order is based on Bombay High Court directives. So, we have decided to give citation to award winners instead of cash. From this financial year, we have started implementing it.”
The PMC gives away awards to institutes in the memory of renowned persons. The maximum cash reward is Rs 1.11 lakh and minimum is Rs 10,000.
On the writ petition filed by Pradeep Jangam against Bhayandar Municipal Corporation over the issue of spending public money on celebration of different festivals, Bombay High Court judges A S Oka and Vibha Kankanwadi had issued the order on Aug 2, 2017.
The order stated that municipal corporation shall follow the orders by court and shall ensure that municipal funds are not utilised for the matters not provided in section 63 and 66 of Maharashtra Municipal Corporations Ac.1949 .
Jangam had challenged the resolution passed in the general body of sanctioning funds for holding various festivals. He pointed out that municipal funds have been utilised by private contractors for erecting pandals, etc. Jangam pointed out section 63 and 66 of the said act provide for mandatory and discretionary duties of a municipal corporation. He submitted that the action of spending huge funds on religious activities and religious ceremonies by private institutions is completely contrary to the provision of the said act.